28 posts categorized "Inside EQ"

Monday, October 08, 2012

Inside EQ - "My Life In 30 Years Of Madonna"


by Raj Rudolph

Facebook and Twitter was a buzz over the weekend about Madonna's very first single "Everybody" celebrating it's 30th year since it was originally released and all the talk really got me feeling nostalgic about how the Queen Of Pop has had such a big influence on my life.

Yesterday, I started to mentally catalogue all the different life scenarios that Madonna has played in my life, and in my youth particularly and thought it would be fun to blog about this morning to share with all of you.

Madonna is the one woman who defined pop culture for nearly three decades and this is my life through her music and how she has played such a role in who I am today.

I rarely blog about Madonna. She's hard to criticize mostly and well - she's Madonna.

  • My introduction to Madonna came through a strange teenage girl named Bobbie who used to help my mother clean hotel rooms. She used to listen to Madonna constantly and fight with her oler brother in the car about what cassette tape to listen to. It was usually Madonna versus Duran Duran. Madonna won the battle most times.
  • My mother thought Madonna was a bit too racy and I had to hide my Madonna cassette tapes from her. My mother never really great taste in music anyways - I get my music genes from my father.

Continue reading "Inside EQ - "My Life In 30 Years Of Madonna"" »

Friday, February 17, 2012

Inside EQ: When Music Blogging Became My Business


by Raj Rudolph

Some of you may not know this, but I've been working as a full-time employee for an American based digital webcast company for the last six years - it's true.  EQ is not something that I did full time, it actually started out as a hobby.  Eleven years ago, I was sent to London from Boston to start up the European trading arm for a company which eventually got taken over by Thomson Reuters.  At the time, it was an amazing opportunity for someone my age, I survived the dot com bust and managed to uproot my life and realize the dream of moving to London to something new.  London is and will always be my spiritual home - I love it here!

I started Electroqueer simply as a way of updating my friends in America on the cool European pop music I immersed myself in once I got here.  It was at a time when blogging was at it's infancy and the only form of social network was MySpace and Friendster.  Music blogging was simply nothing more than a way to express myself and being that I'm pretty web savvy, a natural way to contribute to the pop and electronic music community that I adored and loved.

On a trip to Thailand in 2007, I wrote this blog about Darren Hayes and quite literally overnight, tapped into something amazing via his strong fan base and it truly made me realize the power of social networking and blogging.  It was at that point, EQ became "something" more.  I wasn't sure at the time exactly what it was, but there was definitely "something" there and I then became a professional blogger on-the-side who actually got paid to blog.  Albeit not heaps of money from advertising, but nevertheless those mini blog paychecks actually served as my bonues and often became rather handy on weekends when I spent too much dosh at the clubs!

Over these years, music blogging became an obsession.  I won't lie.  From somehow just being your average everyday music fan, suddenly I found myself backstage at arena gigs, sitting in front of some of the biggest names in pop music and popping up on influential tastemaker lists.  It still feels like a dream to this day and balancing what was "becoming" a career in the music industry with my full time day job started to get more than exhausting and taxing on me.  I've seen a lot of music bloggers come and go, but for me, music blogging was so much more than a hobby - it's a way of life.  The question then became to me - how do I make this all work?

Every person I truly admire has one bit of trusty advice and that simply is - Do what you love. 

And let's be serious, being a music blogger is NEVER going to pay my mortgage, but somehow I know in my heart that starting my own business will.  It's a leap of faith that I'm going to have to make if I truly want to be happy and quite honestly - it's scary as all hell.  I keep asking myself, can I afford to this?  What if I don't get any work?  What if I'm a failure?  When will the time be right?...

Well dear readers, that time is now.

From tomorrow I will officially be a "freelancer".  I'm massively excited to say the least.  I've been training my replacement for the day job for the past few weeks and I will continue to work for my old company as a freelancer, but for half the hours at a really good rate - my job has now become my client!  This will allow me to concentrate more on building EQ Music as a company and social business that will encompass all those valuable skills I learned in video producing and digtial project management and incorporate them into EQ Music Blog, EQ Music Tour, EQ Live events and a new music brand called Poptronik that I've been developing with my friends at AZTEC RECORDS. 

This is literally a dream come true for me.  I feel liberated, excited, challenged and most of all balanced - which is something that I've been striving towards for a LONG time.


What does the future hold?  Well, for starters, not a regular paycheck, that's for sure- but I'm ok with that.  I think for me after spending my whole life working for the man, working for myself is going to be more rewarding and spiritually - it's going to improve my life and outlook on things.  If that's what it takes in getting to do what I truly love - then so be it!  I'm jumping in and not looking back.

EQ Music couldn't be what it is without the help of my amazing friends Mandy Rogers, Javi Lopez and Jordan Meehan who have tirelessly given their time and devotion in helping me build up the business as a brand and for that I am truly grateful - love you pandas!

Why this lenghty gushy blog then?  Well, I really just want to say a huge thank you to each and every one of you who has read and enjoyed EQ these past few years.  Your feedback, support, comments and repeat patronage is immensely appreciated and is allowing me to pursue my dream of making EQ Music be more than just a blog, but rather a passionate digital brand that works to create and help definte the new music industry.  I feel strongly in pushing forward the concepts of a new music industry and marrying that with the powerful internet and social networking age we live in right now. 

This I now know, is my true calling.

And in the true spirit of freelancing, I'm now proud to say that I'm available to hire!  You can always hit me up on [email protected] and it would be really helpful if you could "like" my company on Facebook and please do follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn.

I love talking about and strategizing the promotion of pop and electronic music and no idea is never achievable in my book.  If I can go from being an every day music fan to having my own niche music company and social business, then anything is possible.  This life is truly an adventure we choose and I'm choosing to dedicate my life to music now - let's get to work!

From the bottom of my heart - Thank you dear EQ readers. 

Through you, my dreams have become possible.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Inside EQ: Thoughts On New York's Passing Of Gay Marriage - Important Milestone for Gay Americans


Never in this moment, have I been more proud to be an American. 

You know, America has it's fair share of problems and in a lot of ways, I decided to move away from America to the UK because of these problems.  Expensive health-care, aggressive capitalism, poor quality of life (ie: only 2 weeks of vacation per year), poor outlook on the international community, George Bush and most importantly - unequal rights for the GLBT community.  I've always felt like an outsider in my own country.  Whenever I go back to my own country after being absent for 11 years, I still feel like a stranger sometimes.

However having learned that the state of New York has now passed gay marriage, this news makes me proud to be an American.  Just when I had given up hope that America would never change, the people of New York have banded together to create change in their state and further the fight against inequality.  I've spent most of the last 24 hours watching YouTube videos on the subject and rejoicing in the reactions of my gay and lesbian sisters and unfortunately still shaking my head in disbelief that homophobic people like this STILL exist. 

Although I can stay in the UK indefinitely and I myself will have been gay married to my partner Geri for two years this September, I now feel it would be ok for me to move back to America if I wanted to - because as of now, I have always said I would never return to America.


It's nice to know that America has changed and I know now that it won't be long before the West Coast states where I grew up like California, Washington and my home state of Oregon follow suit.  

I feel a big reason for this change is due to the major music and entertainment icons and television shows who have pushed valiantly for this change - like Lady Gaga and Glee for example.  These entertainment brands never censored themselves and although it may sound stupid, these forms of entertainment, along with every gay person like you and me who have campaigned for equality have changed the perception of how straight people view gay people.  We've moved away from being viewed as a stereotype to that of being a human being - deserving of the same rights as other minorities who have fought and won their basic human rights.

I laugh at America sometimes.  It's supposed to be "the land of the free" but until just now, I have never felt truly free in America.  I know that now, at least in Iowa, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and now New York, I can be a free American and it won't be long before the other 39 states follow New York's lead.  Optimistic?  HELL YES.


I may be an American living in the UK, but nevertheless, I'm most certainly a proud one today.  Congratulations to the citizens of New York for evoking change and pushing for equality.  

California, you're next.


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